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Four Nakuru Police Officers Interdicted Over Curfew Brutality

Four police officers who allegedly clobbered and injured two members of the public while enforcing the dusk to dawn curfew in Nakuru have been interdicted, Rift Valley Regional Commissioner George Natembeya has confirmed.
Natembeya who was flanked by Rift Valley Regional Police Commander Marcus Ochola said that action had been taken against the officers who separately bartered a man in Mauche village within Njoro Sub-County and another in Kaptembwa within Nakuru Town West Constituency on Wednesday evening.
The police commander explained that six other cases of police brutality in enforcing the curfew were being probed and that the four officers who had been identified had consequently been interdicted from service as per police service procedures.
President Uhuru Kenyatta on March 25, 2020, declared a national curfew within Kenyan territory from 7 pm to 5 am to control the movement of people and subsequently the spread of the coronavirus.
The head of state on Wednesday apologized to the nation and vowed action would be taken against officers using excessive and unlawful force after Kenyans condemned the brutal manner in which police the law enforcement agents have been enforcing the curfew.
Mr. Ochola said that he had personally visited the two victims of police beatings at the Nakuru Level 5 Hospital and confirmed that they had sustained their injuries at the hands of security personnel.
He cautioned police officers against meting violence on members of the public adding that the law only provided for arrest of suspects and holding of vehicles and their owners found to have flouted the directive.
The police boss revealed that a total of 33 vehicles had been detained and 29 persons arrested for defying the curfew.
Mr. Natembeya said a multi-agency team had put together a regional command centre which will monitor the Covid-19 situation in all the 17 counties within the region from Nakuru.
He said the team had already identified persons vulnerable to infection by the virus and that it had mapped populations and intervention measures should the pandemic spill over to villages.
Natembeya noted that the team had also identified schools with boarding facilities where isolation facilities may be set up if need arose.
He however expressed concern that most residents were not observing the guidelines issued by the Health Ministry such as social distancing, washing of hands and avoiding crowding in social places.
Natembeya told the residents that it was in their best interest not to get infected as there was a possibility of health facilities getting overstretched if Covid -19 cases escalated.
The administrator urged Kenyans to observe the rules put in place to curb spread of the disease. He emphasized on the need to stay at home, saying Kenyans are ignoring some of the orders issued.
The Regional Commissioner said everyone, young and old, should be at the forefront in stopping the disease spread.
Natembeya criticized those ignoring efforts set up to curb the spread. Some of the measures put in place to curb the spread include working from home for non-essential services, social distancing, embracing mobile money transfers and having fewer passengers in the public service vehicles.
By Jane Ngugi and Dennis Rasto

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